ELEFTHERIA SQUARE BY ZAHA HADID | ITSLIQUID

ELEFTHERIA SQUARE BY ZAHA HADID

Architecture | January 22, 2022 |

Zha_EleftheriaSquare
Image courtesy of Laurian Ghinitoiu | Zaha Hadid Architects

Eleftheria Square by Zaha Hadid Architects
Location: Nicosia, Cyprus
Status: Completed, 2021

Establishing Eleftheria Square as the city’s primary gathering space, Zaha Hadid Architects’ (ZHA) design creates new connections intended to unite a divided capital. Nicosia’s massive Venetian fortifications separate the old city from its modern districts, while the city’s ‘Green Line’ divides the capital into two disparate communities.

Zha_EleftheriaSquare
Image courtesy of Laurian Ghinitoiu | Zaha Hadid Architects

Located near the centre of Nicosia, Eleftheria Square is adjacent to the Venetian Walls and the dry moat that encircles the city. Constructed in the Middle Ages and extensively rebuilt by the Venetians in the 16th century, these substantial defensive walls define the boundary of the oldest part of the capital, dividing the ancient city from the new districts outside the walls.

Zha_EleftheriaSquare
Image courtesy of Laurian Ghinitoiu | Zaha Hadid Architects

ZHA envisioned Eleftheira Square as the initial phase of a much larger urban plan that could be a catalyst for the reunification of the capital. The design ensures unobstructed views of the Venetian Walls, establishing these fortifications as an integral part of Nicosia’s identity, while also opening the dry moat for public use to create an orbital park that surrounds the city. Transforming previously inaccessible areas of the moat with new civic plazas, gardens and palm-lined promenades, the moat can become a ‘green belt’ around the city. ZHA’s design proposes these new public spaces within the moat are extended to follow the ancient city walls and encircle Nicosia, reconnecting communities of this divided capital.

Zha_EleftheriaSquare
Image courtesy of K.Arkatites | Zaha Hadid Architects

The Eleftheria Square design elevates the topography of the moat to create an upper level bridge that meets the surrounding streetscape, establishing direct connections with the city’s urban fabric and defining a new public square in the heart of the capital. Transformed into an urban park, the moat’s fluid geometries have been created through the process of triangulating the irregular forms of the ancient fortifications to establish points of ‘intensity’ that define seating, flowerbeds or water features within the new park.

Zha_EleftheriaSquare
Image courtesy of Laurian Ghinitoiu | Zaha Hadid Architects

The moat’s granite paving conveys a timeless solidity, while open joints between the granite slabs create a passive rainwater drainage system that allows the new trees planted within the moat to naturally balance groundwater levels and reduce erosion of the medieval walls’ foundations. As the largest civic plaza in Nicosia, Eleftheria Square has been designed to host festivals and public events; its upper level bridge and supporting columns are crafted in concrete, their sculptural forms ensure structural integrity in this seismic region and the base of each column morphs into seating.

Zha_EleftheriaSquare
Image courtesy of Laurian Ghinitoiu | Zaha Hadid Architects

The renovation of the square involved extensive archaeological excavations together with works to repair and protect the historic Venetian Walls. The redevelopment also includes two cafes within the square and the new underground parking lot with access ramp on Omirou Avenue. Stairs and elevators directly connect with the bus terminal in Solomos Square.

Zha_EleftheriaSquare
Image courtesy of Laurian Ghinitoiu | Zaha Hadid Architects

ZHAs transformation of Eleftheria Square weaves together Nicosia’s rich history with an unwavering optimism for the future. Bridging the Venetian Wall and moat, the square becomes an important gateway to the old city, its underground parking removing cars from the ancient city’s streets to enable further pedestrianisation that enhances the urban realm of this historic district while also creating new public gardens and plazas to be enjoyed by residents and visitors to the city.

more.www.zaha-hadid.com

Zha_EleftheriaSquare
Image courtesy of Laurian Ghinitoiu | Zaha Hadid Architects
Zha_EleftheriaSquare
Image courtesy of Laurian Ghinitoiu | Zaha Hadid Architects
Zha_EleftheriaSquare
Image courtesy of Laurian Ghinitoiu | Zaha Hadid Architects
Zha_EleftheriaSquare
Image courtesy of Laurian Ghinitoiu | Zaha Hadid Architects
Zha_EleftheriaSquare
Image courtesy of Laurian Ghinitoiu | Zaha Hadid Architects

Are you an artist, architect, designer? Would you like to be featured on ITSLIQUID platform? Send an e-mail to info@itsliquid.com or fill the form below






    RELATED POSTS


    Rimadesio: New Opening in Geneva

    Architecture | July 20, 2024

    Rimadesio is proud to inaugurate its single-brand shop in Geneva, in the heart of the prestigious Champel-Malagnou neighbourhood. A cosmopolitan crossroads, the city attracts a sophisticated clientele who love style and elegance, perfectly in line with Rimadesio's vision. Read more


    MOULON SCHOOL GROUP

    Architecture | July 1, 2024

    The group of schools is generously porous to the west, while the buildings on the other three sides create a protective envelope around the playgrounds. The different entrances (nursery school, primary school, leisure area) are all positioned on Moulon's pedestrian route and, as a result the group of schools establishes a close relationship with the public space. Read more


    SLUIS

    Architecture | June 14, 2024

    Located between the dense city and the vast landscapes on the edge of Amsterdam, the new Sluishuis is shaped by its complex surroundings at once close to large infrastructure and to small-scale urban settlements. Read more


    FLOATING GLASS MUSEUM

    Architecture | June 10, 2024

    Architecture firm Luca Curci Architects presents Floating Glass Museum, a groundbreaking project where the boundaries between art and nature blur and the water becomes a canvas for contemporary expression. The project has been conceived in collaboration with Giulia Tassi Design and an international team of architects and designers with the support of artificial intelligence. Read more


    Sign up for our Newsletter.

    Enter your email to receive our latest updates!